Personal Protective Equipment, commonly referred to as PPE, is often the most effective defence against injury and illness in the workplace and during home DIY projects. While safety regulations should always be in place to create a working environment that makes PPE a safety aid that prevents the majority of injuries, at home the proper use of PPE protects you from less common injuries and ensures your fully protected whilst doing any home projects.
You should always identify all types of risk in the workplace and at home in order to implement the best PPE policies for their employees. To do this adequately you will need to determine what hazards you’re present and the hypothetical consequences that could occur. You can then select a PPE to address the hazardous concerns, most commonly those that will affect vision, hearing, the respiratory system, skin, head, face, hands or feet. Here are a few specific examples of personal protective equipment, and the benefits they offer.
Gloves often serve two purposes. Latex or vinyl gloves can protect the hands by providing a barrier against harmful chemicals, liquids, and contamination. On the other side there are gloves that protect against cuts and heat, particularly useful when operating machinery such as chainsaws or working with open flames or sparks.
Gloves should never be worn around machinery in which they could potentially get caught, and materials should be selected carefully to verify they can’t be penetrated by the chemicals in use. Latex allergies can be very serious, alternative options should be available for those who need them.
Safety goggles, visors, and face shields are all valid forms of eye protection that should be selected by the job and risk associated with it. All hazards such as dust, splashes, gas or vapour, and radiation should be addressed when choosing the proper eye protection needed.
Eye protection should always fit the wearer comfortably, not inhibit vision, and be well taken care of and replaced frequently.
If you are dealing with hazards such as chemical splashing, extreme temperatures, or situations in which their own clothing could become entangled, body protection PPE may be necessary. Lab coats are a popular choice when working with chemicals as they provide full coverage, including the arms and down to at least the knees. If further coverage is needed, disposable full body suits and over boot covers are a good solution.
To guarantee that the body protection is suitable against posed hazards, materials should be chosen carefully. Particularly you should consider if it needs to be flame-retardant, have high visibility, or be impermeable to liquids and chemicals.
As the brain is the body’s most important part, if there is any risk of falling objects, bumps, or hair entanglement, head protection should be in use. There is a wide range of PPE available which will protect the head from standard hard hats to more basic helmets.
If necessary, hard hats and helmets can be fitted with eye goggles, visors, or hearing protection. Damaged head protection should always be immediately replaced.
Employers are legally required to provide their workers with PPE when necessary to avoid risk of injury ,illness, and death at the workplace. A PPE should never be used as a sole control of safety, only complimenting current safety regulations as a last resort.